The skills you gain through studying English are marketable in most sectors. Read on for inspiration on where you could use your degree
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
- Digital copywriter
- Editorial assistant
- English as a foreign language teacher
- Magazine journalist
- Newspaper journalist
- Private tutor
- Publishing copy-editor/proofreader
- Secondary school teacher
- Web content manager
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
- Academic librarian
- Advertising copywriter
- Arts administrator
- Education consultant
- Information officer
- Learning mentor
- Marketing executive
- Media researcher
- PPC specialist
- Primary school teacher
- Public relations officer
- Records manager
- Social media manager
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.
As English is a non-vocational course, the skills developed outside your study are also vital in developing a well-rounded CV. While at university, for example, many English students write for student newspapers and magazines, get involved with student radio or film societies, or volunteer in the community or local schools. Evidence of any skills gained from work experience and extracurricular activities, as well as through study, can help boost your job prospects.
If you have a particular career in mind, apply for relevant work placements and summer internships to get some practical experience and to find out whether you would enjoy the role, and to build up a network of contacts. Opportunities will be advertised on company websites, on sector job sites, careers service websites and in national newspapers. For experience with smaller companies, you may have to approach them directly.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
English graduates find opportunities with many different employers. Public and private sector organisations such as the National Health Service (NHS), educational institutions, local and national government, financial and legal firms, and voluntary and charitable organisations employ English graduates in a range of roles, including:
- arts management
- events management
- general management
Other typical employers include:
- advertising marketing and public relations agencies
- media organisations
- publishing companies.
The retail, leisure and tourism sectors also typically recruit English graduates.
Skills for your CV
The major strength of all English graduates is the ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing. Studying an English degree also develops skills in:
- independent working
- time management and organisation
- planning and researching written work
- articulating knowledge and understanding of texts, concepts and theories
- leading and participating in discussions
- negotiation and teamworking to present ideas and information
- effectively conveying arguments and opinions and thinking creatively
- using your judgement to weigh up alternative perspectives
- critical reasoning and analysis
- using IT.
Some English graduates choose to continue their academic studies by doing an MA or a PhD in areas such as English language and literary studies, creative writing, Victorian, fantasy or mediaeval literature, or linguistics.
Others choose to study more vocational postgraduate courses in areas such as teaching, journalism, librarianship or law. Such courses allow you to study in an area you wish to enter as a career. More information on funding for postgraduate study and research is available from the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC).
English graduates may decide to undertake further study in areas such as marketing and management, finance, human resource management and business to enhance their knowledge of a specific career area.
What do English graduates do?
Just under a fifth (18%) of English graduates are working in retail or marketing, PR and sales. A further 12% are employed as nursery, primary or secondary education teaching professionals.
|Working and studying||11.9|
|Type of work||Percentage|
|Marketing, PR and sales||18.6|
|Secretarial and numerical clerks||14.2|
|Retail, catering and bar staff||12.7|
Find out what other English graduates are doing 15 months after finishing their degrees in What do graduates do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.